With various industrial companies embracing the inclusivity agenda and Millennials pushing for more creative and innovative styles of thinking to the traditional models of diversity and inclusion programs in the workplace, the days of women wearing a work boot moulded on a masculine ‘last’ are dwindling – and rightly so. As the number of women working in construction, agriculture and utilities works increases, so too does their need for reliable and comfortable safety boots.
Diversity champion and ambassador of the construction trade, Sophie Lydia Smith, is leading the way for women by launching her own innovative protective footwear designs. This season, sees the launch of Sophie’s latest style, the Amblers Safety AS601C Lydia safety boot. Women tend to have a higher arch and narrower heel than men, and require a specific fit on top of the various high levels of protection against hazards – an essential topic in health and safety. With more and more women entering skilled labour roles, the demand is evident for women’s safety boots to evolve quickly, both in design and materials.
Sophie Lydia Smith, is well-respected in the construction trade. The building surveyor of Atkins Global has won various awards for her exceptional developments in PPE. Honourably taking home ‘Best Building Surveyor’ at the European WICE Awards (Women in Construction and Engineering) last month and this week winning ‘Best Newcomer’ at the Professional Clothing Awards for her innovative designs of the FS706 Sophie Shoe and AS601C Lydia Boot.
Miss Smith developed her models with European brand, Amblers Safety. With over 15 different safety footwear styles crafted in a dedicated women’s fit and a noteworthy offering of over 40 different unisex safety boots, the protective footwear label are leading the way in Europe offering more choice and innovation. The collection meets Amblers Safety philosophies of ‘tough, working, comfort’, whilst remaining at an affordable price for the everyday worker.
The new AS601C Lydia has a 200 Joule impact and compression resistant toe cap, offers underfoot protection and a traction sole providing greater protection against slip hazards. The materials are lightweight and infuses Sophie Lydia Smith’s signature touch of charm – her statement splash of pink – a design flair much admired in her classic FS706 Sophie Shoe.
Sophie Lydia Smith says, “I will continue to work hard for change and encourage others to join me, leading the way for women by getting the message out there. We must all support inclusivity in our industry by making our workplace an environment where everyone can ‘fit in’. Winning the awards is a dream come true and this means everything to me. I am very proud to have been recognised in such a prestigious way by leaders in the industry as an ambassador for women and my profession. I’ve always had an instinctive ability to find ways of creating positive energy to help break down any barriers ahead of me and I believe that it’s imperative that women in construction take the lead to bring in new solutions to problems which might prevent more women joining the profession. That’s why I investigated developing more female friendly PPE. It’s not something we can do on our own, but there are some great professionals in the industry we can collaborate with to help make things happen, should the need be there.”
She continues, “The success in attracting diversity in Construction and Engineering can only truly be measured over the long term by assessing the next generation’s career choices, through the hard work we are doing now.”
Paul Wheeler, Sales Director at Footsure Western Ltd says, “Sophie is a very accomplished young professional and her on-site expertise and enthusiasm is invaluable. Sophie is an ambassador for our core line of Amblers Safety women’s footwear and a key consultant on style and functionality for her own line of Sophie and Lydia shoes. I’m very proud that Amblers Safety is recognised as having a diverse brand portfolio with a large range offering. We’re constantly exploring new ways to utilise and deliver the latest technology alongside style and functionality. Our safety boots are quickly evolving in terms of design and materials and it’s appreciated that our women’s range is fast-tracking in a similar direction.”
For more information on Amblers Safety and women’s safety footwear, contact Footsure Western Ltd on +44 1452 727300 or alternatively email [email protected]